JOBY Pro Spotlight | 13 Questions for a Pro Photographer |Dale Mears
This month we’re featuring professional photographer Dale Mears. If you’re into kayaking, you’ve probably seen one of Dale Mear’s photos or read one of his articles and reviews. Dale is a regular contributor to The Paddler UK magazine and has contributed works in N-photo and UK’s independent Nikon Magazine. It’s always great to work with someone you can count on to get the shot; but even more important is working with an overall positive and energetic person. Over the last two years, Dale has become more than a JOBY advocate, he has become part of the JOBY family. He always delivers the shot (even with little notice) that make us smile and wish we’d taken that image.
Dale Mears | Age: 30 | United Kingdom
What type of professional photographer are you?
Mostly white water kayaking and other action sports. I like to try a bit of everything, though!
Your Gear What gear do you use regularly?
In my go to gear bag: Nikon D7000, 50mm f/1.8, 70-200mm, sb700 flash, 2 GorillaPod Focus with Ballhead X, Action Grip, Action Jib kit, Contour Roam 3 and Plus 2, Lowepro bags/cases and JOBY Action Suction cups are the essentials.
What would be your dream photography job?
One traveling around the world earning lots of money! I’d like to see lots of places, maybe on luxury yachts in far off destinations!
Why did you become a professional photographer and when did you know you wanted to be one?
Technically I earn a living teaching in the UK, but pick up photography work in my own time. I guess I knew I wanted to be a photographer around 8 years ago, I was on a trip kayaking in Norway with friends and was first introduced to a DSLR. I was amazed by the quality and images that it would take and decided I couldn’t miss out on all the photo opportunities I have had over the years. First thing I did when I returned was buy a DSLR and read as much as I could and practice all the time. The buzz has grown and I still can’t put down my camera.
Did you study photography?
No, I am self-taught, but photography runs in the family. My granddad was a photographer and my dad always had a passion which he started again when I started photography. Most of my experience comes from working most weekends at the National White Water Sports Centre and coaching from my boss at the time.
Do you carry a camera with you daily when not working?
I always carry a camera. I’m scared if I leave it at home I will miss something!
When you’re not shooting photos you are?
Teaching Design and Technology at secondary school, spending time with my fiancé and friends. Kayaking (when its hot)
If you couldn’t be a professional photographer, you would be a?
I quite like the idea of digital marketing, I would enjoy working for a good brand, I have a real passion for promoting good gear.
Have you ever dropped a lens? Come on be honest!
During my time spent photographing at the UK’s National White Water sports centre I was stood taking photos of the white water rafts one day when I blacked out, I guess the night before had been a heavy night! I stepped forwards and went straight into the water, I remember it happening in slow motion, I tried to throw the camera onto the bank and it just dropped in. It was a Canon 7D with a L series 28-300mm attached. They had to shut off the course at night and drain the water! But luckily my boss went in with a wet-suit and Snorkeling goggles to find it for insurance. Fortunately, that’s the only one that I’ve dropped. I always use a JOBY wrist strap or Pro Sling Strap to stop it happening again!
If you could only have only one lens for a year what would it be?
I think it would have to be a 50mm f/1.8; It’s a good lens to carry around. It’s small, light, fast, easy to use and gets amazing shots.
Name a famous person living or dead whose photo you would wish you could take.
Wow… this is a hard question, maybe the Queen, a proper royal photo shoot though, not just from a distance. As to be asked by the Queen would be an honor!
The next piece of gear you’re going to buy is?
A Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8 would be nice, but I have a wedding this summer to pay for first!
And finally what is the one thing you wish a professional photographer had told you before you became a professional photographer?
How addictive and expensive it can be!